Morning Briefing – Friday, July 5

The Copenhagen Post’s daily digest of what the Danish press is reporting

Speaker of parliament accused protecting his own

The opposition has accused Mogens Lykketoft (Socialdemokraterne), the speaker of parliament, of not living up to the duties of his office by failing to take official steps to force cabinet members from his party to live up to parliament’s rules. Lykketoft has spoken critically of the ministers in the media for taking to long to reply to questions from MPs, but has not taken official steps to censure them, leading to allegations he is putting politics ahead of his responsibilities as president. – Berlingske

Online bank crooks rarely nabbed

Theft from online bank accounts and debit card fraud is rapidly rising, but investigators say the vast majority of criminals are based abroad and rarely caught. “It’s very, very difficult to clear up,” said Johnny Lundberg, of the national police’s computer crime unit, NITES. “I can’t recall a case we’ve solved, but we’ve sent information to other countries for their investigations.” While the foreign masterminds go unpunished, a number of their Danish helpers, so-called mules, have been convicted of fencing. – Jyllands-Posten

Taxmen: enough is enough

Employees of Skat, the national tax authority, are concerned that cutbacks and constant restructuring have limited their ability to catch tax cheats. Most recently, Skat eliminated its department for financial crimes after accusations they employed heavy handed tactics, but representatives for the authority’s 7,000 tax collectors said the replacement department did not have adequate powers. Since 2005, some 3,000 tax collection jobs have been cut. Another 1,000 are expected to be trimmed this year. – Politiken

Easier to reject Serbian refugees

The government has received broad support from both the left-wing Enhedslisten and the right wing Dansk Folkeparti for an initiative that will make it easier to reject Serbian asylum seekers claiming to have mental disorders. Residence can be granted on humanitarian grounds to asylum seekers with pyschological conditions that cannot be treated in their home countries. Psychiatric care in Serbia, an EU candiate country, though found by the Justice Ministry to lag behind teatment in Denmark, was deemed adequate. The move comes in the wake of a spike in the number of such asylum seekers. – Information

Cheaper churches

Immigrant congregations are looking to take over management of as many as five Church of Denmark buildings. The Church Ministry has proposed merging 14 Church of Denmark parishes in Copenhagen and selling their buildings, due to falling attendance. Their parishes cost over a million kroner each year to run, but the immigrant congregations say they can do it for about 600,000 kroner a year. Most of the savings would come by replacing paid staff with volunteers. – Kristeligt Dagblad

Carlsberg eyes African growth

As part of its plans to expand outside of its core markets, Carlsberg is eyeing Africa as its next growth market. Africa only makes up five percent of global beer sales, and should Carlsberg decide to expand its operations there, the brewery would likely do so through acquisitions, according to managing director Jøren Buhl Rasmussen. Rasmussen said Carlsberg was still solidly focused on Asia, but new markets, including the Americas, were getting a closer look.  – Berlingske Business

55 hospitalised after inhaling chlorine gas 

A group of 46 children and nine adults have been hospitalised after becoming ill during a trip to the local swimming pool in the Jutland town of Tarm on Thursday. The group, on holiday from the Copenhagen area, suffered coughing fits and began vomiting. None of the children, all aged 12 and 13, or the adults are seriously ill. An investigation concluded the group became sick after the air sensors in the building malfunctioned, leading to a build up of chlorine gas. – Ekstra Bladet

Fuglsang’s chances crash

The chances of a Danish rider appearing on the podium in Paris at the end of this year’s Tour de France suffered a significant setback yesterday. Astana captain Jakob Fuglsang lost two key lieutenants during Thursday’s stage. “Today was just a really crappy day,” Fuglsang said after learning the two had dropped out due to injury. – DR